The definition of Ayurveda is simple and straightforward. Ayurveda is defined as a traditional medicinal system with Hindu roots. It is based on the belief that health and wellness are dependant on a delicate balance between mind, body, and spirit. However, there is more to Ayurveda than achieving balance in the body. Read on to find out more about its history, beliefs, mind/body constitution, and more.

Ayurveda Origins

The Sanskrit term Ayurveda is made up of two words – “ayus” and “veda”. Ayus means life and the latter means science or knowledge.

The term Ayurveda refers to the knowledge of life or the science of life. According to Charaka, an ancient Ayurvedic scholar, “ayu” is comprised of the mind, body, senses, and soul.

Ayurveda In The Past

Ayurveda has been widely regarded as one of the oldest forms of health care in the world. It has a long history, with experts tracing its roots way back to 5,000 years.

The fundamentals of Ayurveda can be found in Hindu scriptures known as the Vedas – the ancient Indian book of wisdom. There are conflicting beliefs when it comes to validating its origin.

Some experts say that it originated from the Atharva-Veda. At the same time, some people are of the belief that it is supplementary to the Rigveda – written over 6,000 years ago – which contains a series of prescriptions to help humans overcome various ailments.

The Eight Components Of Ayurveda

Speaking of Ayurvedic writings, there are eight components of Ayurveda that deal with different subjects. In Sanskrit, writings have stated that Ayurveda is “the science of eight components”. These eight components have served as the official texts of Ayurveda.

Here are the eight components:

  • K?ya-chikits?

“Kaya” means body, “chikitsa” means treatment. Combine the two and it refers to the cure of diseases and illnesses that affect the body. Its counterpart is general medicine.

  • Kaum?ra-bh?tya

The cure for diseases and illnesses that affect children. This is related to pediatrics.

  • ?halya-chikits?

The extraction and operation of substances which have entered one’s body. This is related to surgery.

  • ??l?kya-tantra

The treatment of issues of the eyes, nose, ears, throat and teeth by sharp instruments. It is related to the field of ophthalmology and dentistry.

  • Bhoot-vidy?

This component is about treating mental issues. Its counterpart is psychiatry.

  • Agada-tantra

This is about toxicology so this component refers to antidotes.

  • Rasayana-tantra

The component of lengthening one’s life span. Associated with anti-aging.

  • V?j?kara?a tantra

This is about the study and use of aphrodisiacs and curing problems like impotency and infertility.

By understanding these eight components, you should have a clearer picture of Ayurveda’s definition and its principles.

The Principles Of Ayurveda

The principles of Ayurveda revolve around the belief that there are five classical elements that make up the human body. These are water, air, fire, earth, and ether.

In addition, Ayurveda names seven bodily tissues. These are plasma, muscles, blood, bone, fat, reproductive fluid, and bone marrow.

An important principle in the Ayurveda definition states that there are three elemental energies, also known as doshas. If these energies are balanced, you are able to experience good health. However, an imbalance in the accumulated doshas would lead to poor health in the form of diseases and illnesses.

The Three Doshas

Ayurveda also states that every human being features a unique mixture of these doshas. Every individual’s health and  well-being depend on getting a right balance of the three doshas. This mixture dictates the characteristics of that specific person.

In addition, each person also has a natural dosha. In order to enjoy good health and well-being, balance must be obtained in the body by making specific changes.

Here are the three dosha types along with some characteristics about them:

  • Vata

If you are dominant in Vata dosha, you are the creative type that is quick to learn and grasp new knowledge. You are all about change and movements. You’re energetic and have a creative mindset.

When you achieve balance, you need to be constantly energetic. You’ll also be enthusiastic in your day-to-day life. You are also more likely to have a lean body.

  • Pitta

Pitta predominant types have a medium physique, are strong and well-built. They have sharp minds and good concentration powers. Pittas are also known to have warm bodies which could be related to the belief that they have good sex drives.

A balanced Pitta has a healthy appetite with good digestion. The ability to focus is also top-notch which makes them good decision-makers.

  • Kapha

Kapha predominant types are known to be easy going, relaxed, and slow-paced. This is why Kaphas are known to be solidly-built, with good athletic stamina. They also can easily sleep soundly at night.

Kaphas need to be careful though, as an imbalance can lead to weight gain and water retention. However, achieve balance and you can be strong and steady. Kaphas are slow to learn new things, but have an outstanding long-term memory.

Achieving Balance

Now that you know more about Ayurveda, it is important to know how you can achieve balance.

First of all, you should know what your dosha is. This is very important and everything will depend on this. You can know your dosha by taking an Ayurveda questionnaire online or by being tested by an Ayurvedic specialist.

After taking a dosha test or quiz, you will get recommendations on some of the changes that you would have to make.

Generally speaking, an Ayurveda definition will expound on the need to make lifestyle changes, especially when it comes to a diet and exercise regimen. While a good diet and exercise program can help you, a specific diet and exercise program along with some lifestyle changes based on your dosha can help you achieve balance. This can lead to the best health and wellbeing that you can experience.

There are also supplements that you can research on. But first, check out the different recipes of meals that you can incorporate and then supplement these meals with effective Ayurveda supplements. These are products and natural herbs that can help improve your balance.

After finding out the meaning and concepts surrounding Ayurveda, it’s time for you to start living a balanced life. You can start by finding out your specific dosha and follow the recommendations on the changes to make in life and you’ll be on your way to good health!